Ryan Girdusky appeared for an interview on a segment of the Clay and Buck radio talk show yesterday. The interview is posted here at the show’s site. I had never heard of Girdusky and can’t vouch for him. These were Girdusky’s opening points:
[T]here was no youthquake. The media has had this narrative coming out that there was this giant army of young Gen Z people voting Democrat — didn’t happen at all. They did vote Democrat, but they came out at a smaller level than they did in 2018, and they actually voted more Republican. The data shows it. Tufts University’s Tisch College of Civic Life, they are the ones who analyze the youth vote every year. They said it. David Shor, the brilliant liberal data analyst, looked at all the counties where young voting was down, all of them, didn’t happen whatsoever.
Secondly, abortion, major, major, major driver for independents and people who disliked Biden but didn’t hate Biden. So people who had a slight unfavorability were driven towards Democrats for two reasons: Abortion and denying the 2020 election — really, really, really drove them away in very strong numbers. And you can see it in the issue of Arizona.
In Arizona, there were nine statewide candidates, five of them Republicans won or are winning. Currently four lost. The four that lost all around the election was stolen. The five that won did not talk about the election being stolen. That was a major, major indicator. And that’s probably why Trump yesterday during his hourlong announcement, didn’t mention the election being stolen whatsoever.
A lot of people were also motivated to vote against Trump. More were motivated to vote against Trump than were motivated to vote against Biden, which is very, very, very unusual. And that’s why independents, while Republicans have larger turnout numbers, Republicans really did a good job turning out to win the popular vote, but it was swaying against a swing against independents and people who only lean Republican that really had a big effect.
Whole thing here. I was not familiar with Girdusky but found his comments of interest if true. I can’t find the Tisch Center research supporting his point about the youth vote. (I found current Tisch Center analysis of the youth vote in the midterms here and here, but nothing to support the longitudinal point Girdusky makes.)
New York Intelligencer has posted an interview with David Shor here that makes Girdusky’s point. The whole thing is worth reading. Shor comments on the youth vote:
If you look at county-level data, the single strongest predictor of how much turnout dropped from 2018 to 2022 was the proportion of voters that were under the age of 35. In other words, turnout in America’s oldest counties surged while turnout in America’s youngest counties declined. It’s just hard to square the idea of a surge in youth turnout with administrative early-vote data, county-level data, and exit polling all showing that the electorate was substantially more Republican than in 2020.
At his National Populist Newsletter (on Substack) Girdusky describes himself as an author, podcast host, political consultant, and journalist, but access to the post that intrigued Clay and Buck requires a subscription.